Just completed the game. Decision 3 is a huge letdown for me, coming from Decision 2. It feels unpolished due to quite a number of noticeable bugs, bad design decisions, and glaring balance issues. To elaborate:
1) The game still insists on using mouse+LMB to interact with an object. Numerous times, this has caused me to either accidentally blow up a barrel in my face or has interrupted me in mid-battle. A simple fix would have been to change the LMB input to another button like for example, "E". Furthermore, at one point I've mistaken a leave zone for a shelter zone; they are all yellow rectangles with few obvious differences.
2) As with above, the game still uses a very inconsistent passive melee martial arts attacks (no relation to the new knife->machete melee weapon). Sometimes it triggers when in range, other times it refuses to trigger, and you will automatically stomp downed opponents even if you didn't want to(by using sprint or stabilize). Most importantly, it locks the player in an animation, unable to move or do anything else, which can lead to fatal or frustrating(training shelter Militia upgrade) results.
3) There is a lot of unnecessary micromanagement of resources. Survivors are basically expendable resources you use to upgrade buildings. Problem is, although you can save as many survivors as possible(putting them in camp), you are only allowed to use a handful of them at a time in a team. That means you have to go back to camp to slowly find and recruit the necessary survivors you have already saved or go out and save some more(but add them directly to team instead of camp). This aspect could have been a simple list with numbers of each survivor type, or perhaps to give each survivor a personal feel, make it a list filtered by type, with individual names and stats, and going to camp allows you to chat with them as opposed to requiring going to camp to recruit.
4) Resources are either too scarce or too common. Soldiers are everywhere (good for setting up Outposts and Militia), but builders and engineers(to build factories) are very rare to come by, so I could be stuck with a tonne of soldiers and engineers but not a single builder so I can't set up my factory. Meanwhile, my materials always reach maximum storage space, but I suffer perpetual cash poverty. It gets to the point where players are highly recommended to just fully capture the first 3 zones and then spam sleep for a few hundred days(for about $750,000) just so that they won't have to deal with a lack of cash again. The fact that there is no way to convert one form of resource to another(eg: sell material for cash, convert soldier into builder) has made this problem especially apparent.
5) The game is a lot more grindy than usual, partly due to the above. The other reason is that there is no difficulty curve for costs - it costs the same expensive amount to upgrade in the first zone and in the final zone. Leveling up equipment also takes a lot longer than in Decision 2.
6) Not as important, but there isn't much of a story.
7) Minor nitpick: "- the location of inspectors is random;" If you meant where they spawned in the map, maybe, but inspectors are always obtained in order and will always spawn from the same part of the map zone since inspectors can only be obtained if there is a shelter (eg: the last inspector always spawns in the last zone's Factory Capture). Also note that "Grayditch Area" has no inspectors.
1) Difficulty curve is too steep. The beginning 3 zones, you face zombies as usual, a piece of cake even in hard difficulty, although the trolls(the giant boss enemies) are appearing a bit too frequently early on when your weapons aren't properly upgraded. Suddenly you meet the mutant army, the shield masters refuse to die unless you have a machete(no, explosives don't work) and you'd have to deal with a LOT more trolls and long range attacks, along with getting stunlocked to death from across the screen by almost every enemy(compared to only a handful in Decision 2, and even then still within your field of vision), sometimes randomly. Worse still, this difficulty applies across the entire city instead of localized at a zone - that means if you tried to rush recon into multiple zones instead of consolidating, you'd not only have to deal with hordes more often which will throw you off, said hordes are also significantly harder.
2) A lot of the weapons are terribly nerfed. The starting pistol (which will also be used as part of the awesome riot shield "weapon" btw) is really good on its own, its just that it gets really tiring spamming LMB, and holding down is not an option since the rate of fire would be terrible. That's where the heavy machine gun comes in(60% kill reward Browning 1917->Minigun, not the 70% Heckler & Koch MP5->M60, because the latter is too weak). The knife->machete weapon(not the melee perk, that one sucks) is overpowered but fun although tiring to use like the pistol. The rest of the weapons simply don't deal enough damage in a single hit, let alone over time, and often come with debilitating drawbacks. It also doesn't help that weapons now take a lot longer to level up.
3) As stated above in balance #1, the monsters are tough for mostly the wrong reasons. Trolls, werewolves and mutant captains can all knock you down, and many of them appear in the same instance - leading to stunlocks. The werewolves can actually jump at you accurately from 2 screens away, the latter carries bazookas. The trolls can do both - by elbow diving or throwing nearby objects, but can also perform a charge or throw grenades directly even when upclose where its impossible to dodge! The mutants themselves are otherwise manageable, but the shield masters are no fun to fight against at all since all they have is ridiculously high HP rivaling trolls. Outpost defense is pretty much impossible with stiff controls(even with the aiming upgrade), weak damage even when fully upgraded and the mutants/trolls having so much HP, and constantly attacking the outpost instead of getting through.
1) I noticed that Decision 3 tends to lag for me very frequently, I don't know why. My computer can run a lot of things just fine, so why not Decision 3?
2) Controls feel a lot more stiff and sticky. Controls don't seem to be read once character reaches a state as opposed to simply not letting the move take effect. I've gotten stuck unable to attack with the machete for unknown reasons, but it seems related to getting knocked down, sprinting and using stabilize. Separately, sometimes the sprint key gets stuck and so stabilize doesn't work. Also, there are a few Hidden Caches that are bugged, causing the player to keep walking back & forth before finally reaching the cache.
3) I've noticed NPCs spawn outside the map. I also found that werewolves can jump over the outpost gate during an outpost upgrade mission, allowing it to attack behind the gate and forcing players to destroy their own gate to get through. In tower mode, monsters occasionally get inside of the entrance but instead of entering, continue to attack the outpost undisturbed.
Overall, Decision 3 has tried to stay true to its original formula, but it lacks polish and some bad design decisions were made, which makes the game feel a lot more tedious and repetitive, even unfair. Therefore I can only give it a 3/5 and call it an average game at best.